USS Abraham Lincoln

No Unconstitutional War With Iran

30 organizations sign joint letter to NDAA conferees

Ploughshares Fund is proud to join a host of pro-diplomacy organizations in calling on Congressional Armed Services committee leadership to include the crucial Rep. Ro Khanna and Rep. Matt Gaetz amendment in the final National Defense Authorization Act.

We are working to prevent war with Iran in the wake of the US violation of the Iran Deal, aka the JCPOA. The JCPOA is viewed by experts as the most comprehensive nonproliferation agreement in a generation. The US needs to re-enter the JCPOA, but first, we need to make sure we don't go to war.

To support the Iran deal, Ploughshares Fund connected more than 200 organizations and 85 individuals to prevent the deal from being rejected by the US Congress. Together, we proved the viability of diplomacy with Iran for nonproliferation goals, and our ability to act as a hub for groundbreaking campaigns. Diplomacy works.

No war with Iran. Read the full letter here.



The Honorable James Inhofe
Senate Committee on Armed Services
Washington, DC 20510

The Honorable Adam Smith
House Armed Service Committee
Washington, DC 20515

The Honorable Jack Reed
Ranking Member,
Senate Committee on Armed Services
Washington, DC 20510

The Honorable Mac Thornberry
Ranking Member,
House Armed Service Committee
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Chairman Inhofe, Ranking Member Reed, Chairman Smith, Ranking Member Thornberry:

As pro-diplomacy organizations that oppose unauthorized war with Iran, we call on the National Defense Authorization Act conferees to retain language supported by a bipartisan majority in both chambers that would prohibit funds for military action against Iran without explicit authorization from Congress.

The Trump Administration has repeatedly signaled its intent to subvert Congress’ constitutional prerogative to decide when the United States will and will not go to war. The Administration violated and abandoned the agreement restraining Iran’s nuclear activities and engaged in a series of escalations with Iran. While Iran has ratcheted up the tension with destabilizing actions of its own, the Trump Administration’s provocations and saber rattling have made conflict, not diplomacy, more likely. Having reportedly come within minutes of launching a military strike on Iran a few months ago, the president has again threatened the imminent use of force in response to attacks on Saudi oil infrastructure.

The question of whether American forces should be put in harm’s way is one of the utmost gravity. The Constitution gives the power of the purse and the power to declare war to Congress, and Congress alone. Congress needs to assert its constitutional powers to prevent decisions about the use of force being made by an administration that has acted with gross recklessness and profoundly weakened key alliances and multilateral partnerships essential to addressing threats from Iran. Escalation by the United States risks both further alienation and getting mired in another disastrous war in the region.

Bipartisan majorities in both chambers support blocking funds for unauthorized military strikes against Iran. Although the Senate bill did not include such a provision, 51 Senators indicated their support for the Kaine-Udall amendment that would have added it to the Senate-passed version of the legislation. In the House, 251 Representatives voted for the Khanna-Gaetz amendment prohibiting funds from being used for military action against Iran without explicit authorization from Congress.

Given the bipartisan majority in both chambers supportive of ruling out an unauthorized war with Iran, the conferees must ensure the Khanna-Gaetz amendment is fully included in the final bill.

Failing to honor the will of the American people’s elected representatives on this point, at the very moment the administration is barreling toward an unauthorized and costly war of choice, would be an undemocratic and historic abdication of constitutional responsibility.


American College of National Security Leaders
Americans for Peace Now
Arab American Institute
Arms Control Association
Center for American Progress
Center for International Policy
Council on American-Islamic Relations
Common Defense
Council for a Livable World
CREDO Action
Demand Progress
Friends Committee on National Legislation
Foreign Policy for America
Global Security Institute
J Street
Just Foreign Policy
NIAC Action
Open Society Policy Center
Peace Action
Peace Corps Iran Association
Ploughshares Fund
Physicians for Social Responsibility
Truman National Security Project
Union of Concerned Scientists
Win Without War
Women’s Action for New Directions


Read the original press release from J Street.

No Unconstitutional War With Iran #NoWarWithIran.

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